A proposed bill to privatize 27 Florida prisons met defeat on the state Senate floor today in a 19-21 vote. The controversial bill has drawn criticism and heated discussion from both Republicans and Democrats in the state Senate. Today membes of the Tea Party, corrections workers, labor groups, the NAACP, as well as members of civil rights groups and faith leaders turned out in Tallahassee to protest the bill. They say privatization would elimiante thousands of state jobs and have a negative impact on public safety. Supporters of the bill maintain privatization would save the state at least $17 million dollars during a time the state is facing a budget shortfall. One of the key opponents of the idea has been Republican Senator Mike Fasano. Fasano, who represents Pasco, Hernando, Citrus and Pinellas Counties talked with Florida’s 89.1, WUFT-FM’s Donna Green-Townsend about why he’s stayed adamant about the need to defeat the measure.[audio:http://www.wuft.org/media/audio/FPFASANOPrivatizationQAwDGT.mp3]
Former U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown was found guilty of taking money from a charity that was purported to be giving scholarships to poor students.